i might simply drift past you… a hiccup in purple… a careless cocksuck with no contact info… memory without name.

1

The mastermind mixed media social practicer is someone else’s drag, not mine. What happens tonight is exactly the same as what I do at Get Fucked with Olympia… or elsewhere… tonight is perhaps longer…. but really there is no effort on my part to ascend when invited by institutions instead of individuals who organize club nights… this isn’t a reflection of ethics it is actually an acknowledgement of the limits of my ability and interest. These essays hopefully to blend into one another because they’re part of the same book. I speak to specific persons… I do not make claims for the universal… speaking to/in/of everyone. So if you don’t feel addressed in what follows this is not my concern… it is from the beginning not my project to make you fit for my address. We don’t all sit at the same table… and even if we did we rarely have the same conversation… memory always serves to justify a singular position at the table the way we say it all our way instead of being changed.

If I share hurt queer feelings, this desire is to share knowledge… the site of learning that is negative feeling. I don’t hope to access power or legitimacy… I merely hope to clarify how I came into possession of these feelings of knowing. So a story of a 12 year old who wore his hair in braids, the only incorrect body in a cafeteria sitting at the girls’ table… with no desire whatsoever to conform… this is a trans narrative, a neither nor moment. Confused for girl constantly and disciplined thereafter. The walk home from school was verbal harassment from older teens and grown men… occasionally throwing garbage at me… pickups with gun wracks… boys trailing me for blocks shouting that I will die, violently. A world promising me death at 12 changed me, albeit not into an object of pity for which you congratulate yourself but rather simply a rare knowing that many know not. Those boys, those men felt good about themselves a violence I myself wished not to repeat. Feeling good is rarely dignified once knowing sets in… Those making money from queer these days are kids who were born to make money… or perhaps merely to curate the spending of money. I am an unsilent witness to the fact that there is no movement among us. There is not a collective us involving me and knowing me has little to do with the task of dissolving us. My words I know they present themselves poorly by nature… by the way that I am… not a particularly social being. I hope not to be known but rather to be felt. Feeling wrong isn’t as violent as knowing wrong.

Finding absolutely no value in anyone around me, I came to art in disbelief that value would become legible there… One of the most inspiring artworks from my very limited scope in high school was Judy Chicago’s Dinner Party, probably for its legibility but now for its teachable problems. Then, I was so in love with a dinner party that I wasn’t invited to. I am really in favor of being absolved the pressure of invitation. The dinner party is always about assemblage of power. Chicago arranged the seating, the naming… their representations on a plate… dinner’s served now eat my representation of you… seated where I’ve placed you in my theory of our togetherness… but these beings aren’t and were never together so this reading of history as a dinner party for those who managed to achieve invitation reveals the cruelty of memory particularly discerned memory called history or worse this bourgeois imaginary called Art. This is only ever a reduction. How much of the project of acquiring a name is merely the allowance of such white lies?

2

Our names will be recognized for what they are not… this is the hyper document we make together in the now… in addition to the hopeless project of representing something outdated to a world that comes together via the elimination of histories that write us apart. A separatist future is upon us now. We work to erase this moment no? Claiming postmodernity in times like now hopes to erode with only lazy vanity the power of an encounter that has already destroyed us. How do I change the table? Make the gathering a bit more of what it is for me… a murky pond… perhaps a bit of money and wishful thinking.

I write grants these days mostly from a hopeless position… but also from a Catholic guilt, having survived a single-parent household where I learned that I don’t deserve the money in any larger scheme. When tasked with the distant fantasy that I want to be an artist who spends money… money in the form of a media-arts grant, I wrote that I wanted to be the artist’s voice, one that illuminates the room… YES! You my lovely in the dark until my words shed light on your path. I regurgitated the language of museums as failed public squares… that architects build mausoleums for art instead of meeting places for persons with ideas… I said my vision was to install a public space like pond inside a gallery… triangular benches with a fountain in the middle, LED lights to a sound board of my recorded artist voice dimming and flashing with each word I speak… somehow lighting your way. What the granters could never know: I have no desire to build a fountain that works… mine would doubtlessly leak out perhaps only a characteristic passive aggressive destruction. Yes, my pond leaks… spills over and sprays. I love the idea of gallons of water rushing through a gallery because art that doesn’t move like that should be destroyed… by art that moves, like that. The grinding noise of a pump no longer submerged in water suddenly dueling the faggy tenor of my voice become electrical hazard… my mixed media are actually punishment and liability to anyone who supports my artistic wish fulfillment. A book unreadably wet that never made it to print. She sets fire with water.

Relax save your anger… hoard now your inner peace. We are not working on the things we said we would. Whatever anger you host toward me is just a prop to keep you in the play of yourself. How do you embrace difference but admit the inadequacy of your parts? I speak always from my flawed experiential. I am not a cosmopolitan… I hate travel, and truly, my experience of encountering difference happens not in art… but elsewhere. If I were a fully funded thinker… I might have the time to competitively differentiate myself from Samuel Delany’s Contact Relations and that might illuminate my position for some of you, while simultaneously obscuring it from others. I will always be called an unqualified thinker and an elitist every time I read. I dread the day that everyone concedes my goodness. I want only to walk through language the way I walk through a park… mostly hopeless, certainly unattached and yet knowing that at any moment… Delany, my first queer theory love, reflects on the necessity of sex with a public… saying that “if every sexual encounter involves bringing someone back to your house, the general sexual activity in a city becomes anxiety-filled, class-bound, and choosy” Times Square Red Times Square Blue. When two subjects have nothing to gain, they have only perhaps even less to say. It’s nice to walk away from the job that is art making and be freed the binds of its own identity practice. Why aren’t the politics of job-identity under fire? And it is this simplicity of being that I prescribe myself in lieu of endless clawing at infinities of intimacy… deeper, deeper and finally deepest knowing is what cohabitation cultists profess when I always thought it was about splitting the bills or the blame of making brats.

3

Expertise is a simple way of refusing speech. If you assemble literally no version of a remarkable self then the terms of these others who declare their own love fantastic and relationship skills rich then these terms also fail. You are not special. Art and the external becoming alien with the practice of art… constantly drawing within. The internal is so uninteresting because that was it for me: An internal oozing obvious all over public. People deny me the status of art all the time, which is another doing or non-happening that I refuse to be moved by… or within… or however they wish to manage me. They interrupt, talking entirely though it… fingering cellphones shamelessly… the greatest thing about performance is its capacity to end. A painting on the other hand needs to do a bit more work if it hopes to survive the digital rearrangement of our work environment… that the very people who refuse to attend museums might out right share their reasoning for doing so… knowing full well already that what exists inside is only a misrepresentation of how a world—not the world—reflects on itself. Anyone who has ever worked in a museum knows that the public is hell bent on destroying art regardless how it evokes feeling, or perhaps even more frequently, non-feeling.

I dissolve within the group social. I am at best misrecognition as someone who wants to share when in fact I just want to disappear. Isn’t that what your words do, build a case against yourself? Arting over dinner so often becomes the quest of immortality… becoming a little prince or a Pagan goddess with many names so as to always be called forth…. I am not. present. I will be forgotten in the rumble of things happening now and I am uninterested in futile gestures of being otherwise. People have never been more visible or so forgettable. At the thought of dinner parties, I carry my yawns like baggage to the table and drink until I no longer care about what is being said. How does someone who hates dinners become an artist? How does one experience connection even? How does she see a table of platitudes as such a bad thing? Can’t she just play along like our hearts mean well? Does she have access to that pronoun? Are we playing along? Should we protest now? Or yawn and wait it out?

4

YES. I am hard to love. I hate cut flowers. The table is a disciplinary apparatus. Affluent gentlemen love dinner tables. I hate them. I love their wine. It goes down so easy. Then I am talking but never in a very impressive way. I misplace fact… share thoughts with feeling instead of a feeling of right. When I bed a serious man… I think only for a second his politeness is character, because it’s never lasting. Money does that… spends its charm quickly… flies away suddenly. James Baldwin wrote that “Fear and love cannot long remain in the same bed together” Just Above My Head. I fuck my fears all the time and vacate almost always immediately thereafter… exemplified in the following very abbreviated sexual CV of men very identified with their job titles:

5

A German diplomat to Afghanistan was a total ATM. He first needed the table to perform the pageantry of a date. Though, one salami brötchen and a terrible coffee was all he needed to fuck. The table between us dissolved into a sleep over that turned into morning coffee when he asked if I’d ever been to India. He seeded promises. Showing me his gigantic flat filled with artifacts and over his profound culinary inadequacy we dinned while I allowed differences between us to exist, he attempted to demolish them. He called me long distance from Kabul 5 times in the course of 2 weeks having only known each other for 4 weeks total. I hate talking on the phone. When his personal chef asked for a raise after working for 2 years which he denied, the chef quit so he called me to complain that now he wasn’t eating… barely sleeping… only helped to think about me. I hate people with personal employees. I just do.

A policeman woke me 4 times in the course of a night with his tongue thrusts to my hole. I would have to beg for his attentions anywhere else. He wanted me to stay for bread and cheese and salami breakfast, which is a cultural happening I refuse because my stomach just can’t take that shit anymore… My refusal of his table that first date was actually just drunk sex to his ipod mix of sad college music for white people… my refusal was his end. He needed me to sit at the table and eat the same things to feel that what we did was okay or going somewhere finally. I hate flirting with bread in my mouth.

This New Year’s dinner declined on my behalf by an actor… a tablecloth dinner of professionals. He was happy to tell his sister that he was instead slumming it with a lower class American artist… and in turn so eager to convey her understanding that someone like me might feel out of place at her dinner. Actually I’d only known this bored money faggot for a month and I didn’t want to meet his sister… her husband… their sons… their serious girlfriends and her business associates. But this actor’s ears were selective. He was bred to understand greater truths than I could produce. My sex life is most often an act of self-hatred….

6

What part of the table… the romance of eating together makes “truth” especially when considering the duress of the table… I hate nothing more than consensus of white folk eating together. The dinner so easily becomes an altar of the self… the person who assembles us… in whose name we assemble… I’d sooner sit before a queue of eye-watering bukkake. A place at the table is a prison falsely presuming a place in the conversation. Let us for a moment acknowledge there are those who fail in hearing the screams of white elephants. I cannot believe at the end of this moment you hope to be built up… instead of drained… haven’t you had enough? A dinner feels to me like this… a communal blood letting… watch each other bleed… exhaustion… pale broken beings. Put your assets on the table… tell me everything except the bad. I prefer an identity of what I am not, a negative social contract if you will. Another live-feed terror event gets told in bullet by bullet updates… facts as we know them become otherwise in a minute or afternoon… status unconfirmed… too much dust in the air yet to settle the whole story, but this is blood. Bullet by bullet updates of blood, people watch it drip all night… awaiting any and every moment to feel hunted… This untethered storytelling makes great table talk… Empathy? Or, another excuse to check your fucking phone? Revenge porn? But you’re too bland to be persecuted. You didn’t avoid the tragedy that became of your life already… what’s so precious now?

What beautiful life affirming practice might MYSTI propose in lieu of a table? A wank with a stranger and that brilliant bit where for a moment we need not be named… It’s not lonely. Lonely is the charade of togetherness while holding your tongue at the table… gaining nothing from speech or its absence. Networking grown in the petri dish of dinner parties festers in the air a grotesque reeking clenched anus competition to be delightful company. My love Lee Lozano wrote “WHERE COMPETITION THRIVES FRIENDS CANT EXIST.” YES, she’s talking about NYC circa 1970 and whatever romance for the art world of NYC ends when we observe her. She’s such an inspirational figure within the negative social contract… Embrace for a second conversation as a standstill or a standoff… designed only to break your spirit with misunderstanding.

7

And so obviously justification is the departure point from me. I seek not to justify my position here. Justification is a competitive impulse. There’s no special component that made me worthy of monetized thought. I speak from the disbelief that I accept a fee for speech. Standing here in a sense of justice would be impossible, for me. Feel robbed tonight of your chance to speak. Rest assured I allowed you no opportunity, and invite you to none now. Feel robbed of your right to engage… to feel engaged. I might simply drift past you… a hiccup in purple… a careless cocksuck with no contact info… memory without name. What does naming do in limiting the process of knowing by refusing the larger boundaries… territories or BARF planetary terrains of non-knowing? I will never know what you get out of this… what wishful gaze “liked” this sight.

I make no claims of preserving truth. Embodying history. I will be wiped out. I prefer the aimless years I spent here trolling in comparison to the driven or professional years of friends and former colleagues cultivating, achieving—or dare I say merely maintaining—a position of power they were born to hold. My position isn’t better, but TRUST ME, it’s not worse. There are those dying to make themselves nameable… but no matter the effort the intention or even the product… the naming and recognition of the name is outside this bloodletting. The project of feeling known wars with the declarations of being known and whatever this state is supposed to produce… given that common knowledge is only ever unspectacular, who wants to feel like that?

9

The political only does away with the appropriateness of your being. The political magnifies your failure to make right with ample opportunities to have done so… it misplaces the legitimacy of knowing with a placeholder that promises no naming or duration…. a placeholder that is only a refusal of your ability to argue… the way you’ve always gotten your money made. Right, everyone knows those who pride themselves on the ability to negotiate… and we know these moments when negotiation becomes petty screaming ego tantrums… we know that arguments are marked and that some, for a myriad of reasons, are just incapable of arguing their worth at least not convincingly enough to pay out. Check your own feeling of worth and consider now those you steal it from.

The fountain, called Wishing Well, embodies quite actually a vacuum of moneyed desire. It consumes your money… and lets you the opportunity to hope wish or pray that art-looking helps you manifest in the world. It absolves me the labor of reading aloud so poorly… The politics of assembling thought… this is not a position from which we feel finished accomplished or proud… it’s a bruise, draining. Thought is cold… a cold shoulder to those it doesn’t address… even while perhaps claiming to work on their behalf. The political hand touches the hot stovetop many times in the process of learning very little. Let my leaking pond wish itself otherwise.

Suspending the naming project is a means to stop the cult of the individual (whose name we only love or loathe arbitrarily from indulgent un-imaginary) while refusing the bits of identity that fail us time after time. I prefer the contested territory of the stage it allows a direct access to your boycotters… yawns… I am not drunk on thought I’m drunk on booze; it is charm and cowardice. Personally, I am never convinced by live performance… I don’t expect you to be either. I look at you—your puddle of hopeless, useless want looking at me called art—and I feel invincible.

10

AXIOMS TO SHUT US BOTH THE FUCK UP:

A regime of justice will not seek our approval.

Your right to more will be revoked.

Your contributions might just be repurposed at cautionary tales. (Again, done so without your approval.)

There is no career in culture and feeling otherwise is simply the ecstatic release of losing your soul.

There are many much better uses of your time… time now long since lost… even just tonight.

Self destruct is that thing we’ve been doing all along… that’s the pressure in the air around us… that’s the ALL CAPS FACEBOOK THREADS UNRAVELING

What can I as an artist do honestly? I can wish you well… But, I cannot affirm you… that would be criminal in most cases.

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PAINAL INTERCOURSE

Sarah Schulman recently wrote a rather kind—perhaps over-kind—response to queer sensitivity discourse in our shared social networked lyfe. It is an obvious yet somehow long overdue assessment of over-stating harm under the title Conflict is not Abuse. She does respond to several urgent needs in American culture: reduction of police intervention, a greater responsibility to each other, a truer rendering of terms like abuse and also the insular-made-isolated by technologies that are supposedly making us more connected. That denaturing of interaction, loss of facial registration or tone, fails in connecting us to intention… our intention to be or feel together… if indeed that’s what we are still doing. I have my own reservations about Saint Schulman as she survives her own writing always so right… She’s a righter of history if you ask her. She argues that we owe one another an ordering of facts, a timeline of conflict before departing relationships.

The flaw of her project, I believe is that we are all coming to these urban post-educated (extreme education if you will which stems from extreme wealth and preserves it) assemblages wishing to feel together. This is a bold assumption. I believe all the A-List dramaturgy, pill popping, chronic travel disorder (as if compulsive traveling means you encounter anything but daily fresh clean sheets) between and within LINKEDIN evites are all smoke and mirrors of being—separate. You stay in the room long enough to leave an essence of having been present but not present enough to say something stupid, or simply reveal the comprehensive childproofed life you live calling home constantly for money. Fame—or the lesser strategy of possessing Followers—is a culture of being alone no? Who in the end wants to have credit attributed to another… or worse a series of fortunate events that made talent or praiseworthy being possible? Right? You didn’t learn the flute because you were so disciplined… first someone bought you the fucking flute and tolerated the noise you made with it. The drug/alcohol addictions of parents clouded in affluence instead of criminality… a dad who gambles with his bonus check rather than the rent money… These are things that irrevocably shape possibility and certainly denature the purity attributed to accomplishment.

BUT, in our queer times, contextualized continuously in real time by tenured minds Privilege is the vocabulary word designed to assess these measurements of being… and it has quickly eroded into a mere accusation. Above all let me admit that I benefit from and contribute to dialogues of privilege tallying, but let me for a moment try on this ill-fitting dress that says those of us talking privilege sit already at her table, stuffed full, too bloated to move. So increasingly the concept of privilege is a silencing mechanism, a delegitimizing mechanism at a table of lazy minds who fail to recognize that the term is actually a placeholder for those you do not encounter because of your very own trajectory immeasurable in circumstance versus the self who acted within, or rather inseparably via, that very same circumstance. Or is the intention simply learning the terminology so as to refuse change?

Before I go too far I would like to dilute the power of the term, by recognizing that smart people speak in fads… Problematic is a kinship term to the more articulate Privilege. My first encounter of organizing within queer strIcture… problematic the word was dropped at the end of every conversation like a power period. Problematic was so easy to say because it kept you from having to define the parameters of the problem, it’s ripple effect and your investment in its identification and consensus as problem. When we perpetually find problems external, we manage the space around ourselves as safe and the things we have become unquestionably ours. Safety is only a control. Sometimes the problematic is an understandable violence… someone might simply not know of contemporary discourses… and sometimes it is willfully violent registering itself otherwise via knowledge of the very terms designed to bring name to these events. Problematic was the magician’s cloak 10 years ago. What is our magician doing behind his cloak? Maneuvering a magic trick you stupid fuck. Problematic in my experience was never about problem-solving it was the way of being right about wrong, children of matriculation pointing at wrong together, no more or less.

Privilege is no doubt more articulate, but it has surely already lost grounding as useful in anything other than problematic power play. Because while the poetics of privilege stem from very real encounters within women of color feminism, these writings replay all too well now… 40 years later. Vocabulary, what we name things, what we allow ourselves to be called, who we allow to name us… if we have an say whatsoever in the project of being named… if that naming process is done to call us forth or simply label us aside… the wording evolves; however, in the course of just a few years unimaginative academics fail time and time again to keep their terms useful. Metaphor and almost libertarian culture of comparison cement space for power over these words. We will never feel together, they know this. Their eager invocation of vocabulary is merely to shut you up, replace you with nothing but space for their conveyor belt of self.

A moment of silence for those using words like these…

Does someone need to remind you that you didn’t buy your flute? Does someone really need to commend your choice to spend your parents’ money on traveling abroad, learning languages, and accruing academic degrees in feeling… expertise in hopeless nuance? Good for you these are indeed better purchases than inpatient yoga-orientated drug rehab. But even when rich kids go to drug rehab we are supposed to congratulate them. When they make a shit film with a bunch of money and unpaid interns… we are supposed to watch and go “Good Job. What are you working on now?” When confronted with these options of defining parameters of praise for individuals accustomed to unlimited affirmation, I prefer silence. Because I don’t have the words you need and I know you will always get your needs met regardless what you do with me… how your words work—even just between us—in your favor.

My grievance is the academic roots of feministing and queering programs. Many people grieve my academic drag… saying I merely reproduce the violence of speech acts claiming such specialization. So I am gonna step out… and unlike Schulman, I won’t describe personal experiences in unconvincing third person god’s eye narration… I will share outside abstraction an encounter with a friend who works in American academia… he somehow always has money to travel internationally… has lived on multiple continents… currently acquiring extended funding for his phd… and has casually been to Berlin a few times since I moved here. We are different people. This is fine because I prefer difference. When asked for my what have you been up to elevator speech during a gap of unemployment when I was actively not leaving the house so as to not spend any money not knowing when the next job might come along. I said I am writing a book. He rolled his eyes in my face! I do get that, when someone doesn’t like what I do. I try not to stake a claim of legitimacy over anything, because illegitimate is more my speed. Regardless, his instinctive response was a wave of truth I need not tread. When I found out that he wrote a book, I ordered it and read it regardless our theoretical differences, I felt I should.

He was squeezing me in before meeting that AA Bronson who currently he’s writing on… I told him I am quite weary of Bronson’s shaman shtick, that in our shared early Berlin years I’d seen him appropriate Eastern spiritual rituals verbatim as contemporary art… and that these performances or happenings were so un-spirited there was no other conclusion but for me to let the old man die. I didn’t say “Don’t write about AA Bronson” I said “Careful, he’s tricky these days” to which my more and more distant friend said, “Well I can’t even think about that.” In the midst of extending funding on his degree (therefore having time to engage with the difficult not just the heroic) he willfully turned a blind eye to his subject’s dangerous tendency to appropriate cultures for substantial monetary gain. Again, I allowed him the easy way… he can do whatever he wants but truly this is the only way history makes heroes: Willful omissions of thought. Suddenly a non-witness or at best an unaccredited mind, I tried to change the subject to critical evaluations of the university apparatus: Didier Eribon, Fred Moten, and Sarah Schulman… he conceded bits but somehow acquiesced with the hardly tortured lament: “But I have such a hunger for knowledge” he said. Yes, years of grad school, language learning and continent hopping he will still lean on blatant cliché. Hunger for knowledge reads to me a picky eater. Here is where I sort of depart as a lesser subject from him… when conflict isn’t a conflict so much as a non-knowing, or specifically in this case a refusal to know… a needing not to know. Nonflict. Do I really owe this bitch a timeline?

Those good at flipping professional, love to tell me I’m misreading virtually everything, this is the nature of professionalism as identity. There is no struggle in professionalism and yet a professional mind always conceives itself as having struggled, but never in the midst of potentially losing. The places that produce real queer, really read feminism… These are not cheap schools and their endowments could serve many, many more students, instead quality of education is made only by its scarcity. Somehow after achieving access to the best education money can buy, queer fashion victims and rich girls graduate still mad at patriarchy or a plague of -isms—these very systems which colluded in the making of daddy’s money which paid for the cultivation of their vocabulary… which is not however the equivalent of an ethical standing.

So they shuffle entitlement to rage around in some tarot deck of pained privilege… celebrating ignorance under the title of karma… reading futures all the while believing they’ve got the vocabulary to speak truth. The fraternity of the traumatized… that pain somehow produces purity… as if trauma belongs only to those who speak it well. Trauma in my experience rarely reflects intelligently. Somehow liberal art-ing becomes group therapy… therapy that produces competitively dynamic and powerful individuals… in stark contrast to the recovery available in lower classes, like Alcoholics Anonymous, where participants are made to believe themselves powerless to their addictions, perpetually addicted and irrevocably so. Rich kids get a different therapeutic vocabulary. They become actors in a world… shapers of justice… builders of a timeline in which we all get our due eventually… eventually in art-working they ditch the conventional CV and deny the education that made them so typical, so fit to belong within their successful peer group… a generation of thinkers fermented in the same rotten barrel of money… suddenly bored again so they create a mythology of avoiding self instead becoming animal, psychic or furniture… not sacrificing a single thing.

How does one pay reparations on such a degree? How do I insert a placeholder in a timeline with someone who knows better than I? Silence holds place Schulman. It is an event and a response. One can feel named by silence if they choose to gamble self with terms whose meaning cannot be argued… silence holds place for being named differently… outside your terms, outside the terms of us. One could write a whole book insisting that they have right to an arguable timeline of naming or they could listen for what silence says in a world of words that can only argue otherwise… around… and against that silence which recognizes you so well, names you so appropriately.

 

 

TRUVADA IS THE NEW DATE RAPE DRUG

truvada

I am not the behavior police. Bareback. Gift-giving, Truvada Whoring, CHEMSluts. Pharamacopornographic queer cult enthusiasts… even those unicorns saving themselves for the perfect real gay marriage… Honestly, I don’t care anyway you find yourself or how you might observe or demonstrate or perform the feeling of connection via these variable practices of life-sharing within their often dogmatic tendencies. These are not barriers in my mind… these are not thresholds of intimacy or alienation in of themselves. These are also not the behaviors I wish to argue over in what follows.

I am not in the entertainment biz either… Please be real and admit that nightlife is so full of shade and shit talk… CHEM kids and brainless beards… you’re bound to have several unpleasant happenings on any given weekend… treated liked a “fag hag” or told you’re fat… rejected arbitrarily from that techno bin while a line of cows behind you await the same… the same beat all fucking night long. At any moment you can walk into someone’s bad trip or very public break up or break down into a puking broken heart… too drunk to be loved… the negative of nightlife is ecstasy for our misanthrope. It’s a delightful, relatively justified violence… to hate persons who have nothing better to do than drunk and drug themselves sick every other day… and to hate our own selves for being among them looking for love or fun drunk and drugged. Tonight your laughter isn’t my project. I don’t seek adoration so expressions of disappointment will be futile. Smiles are often faked especially among the career-orientated. I am not a career queen. Why would I seek that which you offer to everyone thoughtlessly… as reflex… a social safe room?

Maybe I am now only a single fracture in this evening? Thinking aloud a little too raw. Conversational barebacking. But I’m not alone in this. In truth and honesty, I wish I felt I was giving something of greater value here. Indeed, rehearsals could have ironed out my kinks but what is a night without stumbling over some words, if only finding yourself (read: MYSELF) in a space to reflect and justify—to yourself of course—the means and the doings of how you live?

TRUVADA IS THE NEW DATE RAPE DRUG. Terms defined: Truvada is a specific brand anti-retroviral drug taken to prevent HIV infection in the midst of exposure to HIV. But, what is date rape? If this were a Neoliberal classroom I would ask you my audience to generate the answer… and then I would value your collective surplus or oblivion as a democratic spectacle but that’s not my thing. Date rape is a conversational coercion of sex acts from someone who has already clearly indicated that they didn’t wish to engage in… when “No” clearly stated turns into a cloud of confusion via a conversational bullying technique called grooming. YES, grooming as in a dog… gently stroking, talking nice and cute until KICK. The former feelings of love or likeness or attraction become a violation, a grave misrecognition… recognized only too late… because the groomer plays on your generosity knowing that you don’t want to believe him a rapist all the while he’s raping you. Refusing your words, reasoning and desires, blaming you for not conforming to his erotic, his desire to control… Date rape is rape that begins as a conversation.

For those of you in the cult of rugged individualism who wish to leave persons alone in these feelings… feeling alone like this in a conversation where the meaning of one’s words deform and erode… this moment becomes for you my prescribed aloneness… There is nothing MYSTI makes for an individualist.

My dear gay sex seekers: We here in Europe have yet to access the Truvada trough of freedom and so I think it’s important to reflect on its normalization among the boatloads of creampied Americans. I’ve managed to keep casual the conversations with many of my friends enjoying their pharmaceutical privilege and yet refusing to take questions… insisting that their conversation has been had… they seemingly mirror clones echoing throughout App networks these sloganisms about pill popping as education. What is it when you place the video link of a Prep infomercial in lieu of your own words? —some scripted hammy HIV educator advertising long term costly medication… the new brand of gay liberation as a pill. What is this trend when moving imagery… note: someone else’s moving imagery… takes the place of your role in the conversation… what is this brutal submission… and how is acquiescence claimed bold and knowing? How is this the state of being “educated”? Education is supposed to make your conversation skills dynamic… or complex… not reverted into a playable click. Don’t ask me about Prep educate yourself!

Isn’t conversation from the educated side of the spectrum actually the position of listening, waiting for a moment to share in a conclusion rather than an invitation to restate that which you concluded long before your encounter with said uneducated individual? Maybe this tendency denies altogether your ability to encounter any being of difference? Is education, which is a subjective position, the barrier we should be denouncing when it comes as a script because shouldn’t sex be different—with every individual you encounter? I know that the clone is a longstanding gay tradition, but he’s never identified himself as particularly ‘educated’ until now so I have to ask of what do we mean by the educated one dictating behavior to another via his pharmaceutical privilege, making instead an erasure of the possibility of cumming together in a way that suits us both. Is that the purpose of education… to experience the joy of knowing how others should be living… to become drunk telling them shamelessly that their lives are not their own… best if left in the hands of another?

Walk away from me and pop another pill in protest if you must, this reaction really truly won’t make me feel different about you. Only a fool would seek to change you… only a narcissist believes her work as a performance artist does something. A yawn is perhaps the most honest and appropriate expression of this moment we share together.

The goal of not getting HIV whatever your preference of prevention… couldn’t this shared goal of reducing seroconversion be a united front regardless the ways each individual pursues this endeavor? If the end is articulated as the same… a more peaceful world… a more “equal” society… knowledge and access to comprehensive sexual health… why is the means such an exhausting argument? So exhausting that we can only share video links about our position? Such a social ladder… stepping over one another… when we know that this shit has to flatten…

Truvada is another blue sex pill for men and their privileged sex lives over women. In Germany we suffer sexist socialism… where women pay more for insuring a uterus… monetarily disciplined for needing gynecology visits… this isn’t socialism it’s sexism. In America, where the birth control pill, other contraception choices and abortion are only ever nominally covered by insurance if even… why can a fag so eagerly pop a pill and claim there’s no conversation to be had??? Isn’t he a sexual health sell-out? Or is he just a raging misogynist? What of patents and their costs… how is proactively purchasing these costly drugs maybe merely a blind submission to a global system that denies many persons all over the world access to medications they need in order to survive? Your barebacker rights movement fails so many of us… in its short sightedness… educated is not the position from which you speak… its privilege renamed. Because those most at risk in the world are the least likely to access the sexual health advice they need.

Knowledge or claiming the space of ‘educated’ here is the means to be better than people rather than to be better with people… it attempts to take their terms of safety and claim them antiquated regardless their access. America loves purchasing safety. Everything shifts to the responsibility of the self… rather than a shared responsibility to each other. Economies of only self-betterment sound like private equity strategies… keep it all in reserve… sell it whole or broken bit by bit right as any remaining value escapes. It’s hoarding culture…. it’s holding cards close to your chest games… it’s a lot of denying, lying and forgery… usurping a sense of payout only from the loss of others… rather than a shareable space… rather than coming into a space together.

The soulless are those born believing their minds are the only limit… they learn to conquer… renegotiate… cheat if they know how not to be caught… lie if no one important knows the truth… and fake so good it works them to the top which feels empty or broken so attentions turn toward a moving target of want… All self-construction costs become justified… tuition and travel funds make the mind trusted… living abroad till its time to get back to moneymaking… vacation house-s everywhere… a home on every continent. Drugs… rich kids love to argue that drugs expand the territory of the mind… that territory which deserves endless expansion. Does it? Expand? Or is different in this assumption only then a feeling of it rather than a becoming?

What is the result of believing the expansion of your mind engulfs another entirely? Is this really what you think? What you do… discarding someone who fails your terms of use? How do we manage our knowing? What is its legitimate exchange value—or should knowledge mostly feel burdensome these days? How do you expect to manufacture facts when these terms of reality belong only to you… are you founded only in lies, lies that could only be learned from within such a fragile and unforgivably uneven life?

Educated or not… Thoughtful living is differing conclusions that work together.

Platitudes Become Form

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How is Hillary Clinton a politician and not an activist? Because when she conceded saying “Let Donald lead” this was somehow much less an affront to her apparatus than the self destruction that would have come in critiquing the very system in which she played – winning – up until now. Similarly, when Fart Forum publishes politics called art, we see how it is that elections hurt everyone-except those in the habit of speaking casually about great lofty ideas called art, art-working and politics as some secret everything but the kitchen sink recipe. Politics don’t sell a magazine of ads. Politics are there as if to convince the Art World that it encounters the political at all… gifting the wealthy their ‘chance’ or ‘right’ to be political, but only when they feel like encountering this lesser denomination of self.

Artists write lame duck statements because, not unlike Hillary, they work shamelessly within a system that arranges them as the benefactors of violence. These artists wander through a maze of mirrors, seeing themselves on every wall… selling well. Art works for those imagining that the interior of her own lesbian mind or their trans being is a shareable space. Plundering identity as a sales point. But this is not the case. Bard isn’t a sharing exchange… it’s a purchased exchange… such high student tuition could also provide funded positions for students from elsewhere… but the means with which money is made in art-working, who you’re selling to, isn’t territory accounted within the assets  of those speaking only particular truths from power.

The luxury of encountering the political versus enduring the political is someone who owns desirable property, vacation houses, pets with passports, someone who doesn’t worry of how to afford assisted living for parents who believe social security is a Ponzi scheme, frequent flyer miles thoughtlessly carbon foot-printing all over the globe… always a reason to be gone… is someone who encounters at will… with whimsy or humor… the means to be inarticulate… while being named political… these are not the words of someone wagered big… in a lottery bet on right winning… unhappy merely winning wrong.

Our Tweeter in Chief is a product of times that support us submerging others… if you don’t worry about how to pay insurance… if you’ve got use for an accountant… if you walk the streets in $400 shoes… if this is not just normal, but somehow feels “right” to you then the political speech act is just a play… a dupe… to make people think you’re an actor in the world when you’re just a player, a player who happened to win.

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I too try to refrain from naming Trump, because his name is everywhere always. And talking Trump so rarely culminates in a course of action… most of the art-workers I know  aren’t willing to sacrifice anything… except maybe their hope. If I cannot imagine working against this establishment with you there is certainly no point in talking about it to you. We cannot normalize or make regular speech acts of submission to such a puppet. Rich people… those who like to think themselves sensitive artists… love to feel under siege. Prematurely. Vanity grief. Don’t rob me of my misery… a life without misery is-MINE ALREADY. Phantom pains…

The political from an activist is loss… lost time, lost hope, loss of other options…lost voices shouting at negligent ears, drowning the self in a sea of others who maybe need things against our own better interests. When an artist cries political it doesn’t work in this sense of loss… career artist-ing is also about personas being a lifestyle that augments/supports the meaning assigned to the objects made or ordered to be made by the one whose hands are called artist’s. Individuals in careers that require this grotesque level of individualism never speak honestly in the political… because the political is leaving your body… your circumstance… in the greater force of many bodies attempting to speak together.

Post fact. Lying about loss… lethargy misidentified…. to be made great again? The artists playing political sound like Tinkerbells for Trump… there will be so many artists making money from this election turnout… burnout… tweet-a-thon… They will play the role of the fairy taking all the bourgeois artist-born art-kids to Never Never Land where they never never need to encounter the pain of growing old or seeing their investments in violence… the payout of violence… feeling good about avoiding that truth while burying yourself in… yourself.

Artists work in money networks, gossip and shit talk, entirely too medicated… not even expected to make their own work… or pay assistants living wages… while swimming in buckets of money from god knows where… All accumulations of wealth are theft.  They say: Who cares what they see in my work… the way the work of my hands strengthens their assets portfolio… and accrues value for them if I’m doing my job right. Maybe she should stop painting? Or would that make the old pieces too precious? Or maybe the luxury of considering whether or not to work should be considered privately if one wishes to be believed living in troubled times… or via?

You cannot see yourself being political… you cannot be political without sacrificing this seeing of self. What are you willing to lose? A sense of rightful accomplishment? A restructuring of the elitism you profit from? Losing your speech platform outright when others concede that you’ve said nothing usable? Where is your money? Divested? Hanging in closets of clothes? Indie-a-gogo’d to some unaccountable documentary film project? Supporting not the subjects but those who made the subjects into resources… who make subject watchable from afar… so so far…

Best to name the self… the bits of self that work with Trump… the bits that were post-fact and profited somehow unscathed by truth. We can learn the terms of today… saying them again tomorrow… trying to forget that meaning changes over night… the same thing said again tomorrow neglects the tasks of what became yesterday. If you cannot bring new words… new meaning… new sincerity to this table, it is perhaps best to remain alone wanking away in the studio than muddying the air between those who have no option but to endure the political terrain of today… where artists seek to sell this moment… represent the movements of those willing to sacrifice the self, their time, their labor to a great moving body… Artists silver spooning it to jaded fucks who would profit in these times regardless who holds the throne of democracy.

Activism is not a media for art-making. Your political persona drag will not increase the value of the pictures you paint… the life art you live… when justice trickles down… you’re going to have to own your criminal complicity in representing this moment as an exhausted yawn instead of an invested heart. We don’t know how far this will go given it’s too far already. There are those among us not struggling to conceive of resistance… who by the very nature of living, embody resistance daring to continue in a world that becomes more unlivable every minute. Can we name them? What should they do with a single nest egg… Like a Raisin in the Sun???

Asagai: Then isn’t there something wrong in a house—in a world—where all dreams, good or bad, must depend on the death of a man?
Beneatha: AND YOU CANNOT ANSWER IT!
Asagai: I LIVE THE ANSWER!

There are, inside those of us yawning for revolution, pieces that must be excised… burnt branded differently… bank accounts made payable to others… reparations for pirating the collective, the underground, those who truly sacrificed their individual… observe now your scoundrel slips of tongue when you wish to be validated for feeling tired… that bit that proves you’ll somehow manage regardless what the world does to others… Art takes the soul out of things… selling this human spirit is a dangerous trade… especially when shielding yourself with inarticulate abstraction that makes your social contract renegotiable, endlessly.

You & I, or we the art-workers, suffer not survivor’s guilt because our lives were never on the line… our souls however are long since gone.

Write/Wrong II

MYSTI Community “College” over-extends herself once again to provide a course of action for the largely inactive. Has your life of art-working been at the mercy of jet-settlers who have access to unending educational courses of self-spectacularization? YALE NO WE WON’T GO! For those of us left producing only questionable material… BARDfuckers BANNED! What might be said if we had a room of OUR own? GoldsmithsYourself! How might queer theory write if unscathed by pedigree instead maybe left as unpublished weirdness? The brand-name educated, conversational colonialists are not welcome here. How does thought arrange itself in a room of persons who gather together for no other purpose, with little to gain and even less to lose?

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Terms changed and so did she, as in me, MYSTI: Let us together articulate a new resistance movement… a new separatism for those of us experiencing life as un-certified minds within a rubric that values us for this very in/experience. A non-event; a non-happening; a non-recognition is also a way of bringing persons together, so let us explore this space in which we share… unattached to authorship or the mandate to conclude prematurely, because none of us are done yet.

Space is limited because I perform these functions unpaid, and I am a very difficult personality (mostly the latter). Interested participants should create a CV that has meaning and attach it to an email – mystismonthly@gmail.com – of 10 words or less about the last time you indulged in or refrained from masturbation… make me feel your choice… the urge… the burden… regardless the in/action. Because sometimes doing something is as unremarkable as not doing it.

I have low expectations. We will meet once or twice and spend most of the course between and thereafter constructing an author-less, open ended written work via WhatsApp or Telegram making a mess over this indiscreet conveyor belt of artist-production that rather uncritically re-brands children with means as precious.

We might consider: Returning to Reims, Gentrification of the Mind, or The Undercommons recognizing of course that these were written from tenured positions within the University industrial complex, so I ask what might be written by an amorphous, self-determining outside?

NATIONALISM IS THE RELIGION OF EUROPE

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A reader suggested that my writing was losing focus… scattered… or whatever I don’t really remember cause unsolicited feedback never registers, I never benefit, and I am better off not knowing how wrong I’ve written or how reading me might be more pleasurable otherwise. I rarely ask people what they think because I believe polling is dangerous. Write now, in this moment, I am and have been for a month or so merely identifying shrapnel. It is okay if what I have doesn’t necessarily belong together. Many writers spend time forcefully filtering subjects and content to blend and become one savory piece, please try next time to read in those pieces what doesn’t belong together regardless the ways they might like to write it so, seamlessly. I like my readers feeling things I don’t, reading things between that I didn’t write, because this is reading and being in the now which is shared among GRINDR, Whatsapp, FB, the sub-groups and network-strangers infinitely within thereafter. The following hopes to marriage the then with the now, when I might have been called focused with now a loss of that focus… and how these bits of shrapnel are together regardless of belonging that way…

I recently sat through a terrible lecture on really bad, topical and didactic art dealing with the question of Islam in Europe… one of the professors insisted that the art does its doing regardless the artist’s intention, so when a white German dude artist sculpts a statue of a woman nude except the headscarf his positioning remains outside the question, as the piece, with its own agency, magically becomes an invitation for Muslim women to enjoy what nudism means in Europe. (The presenter of course does not consider nudism in its cultural connection to Nazism and its love of exhibiting the white body, nor in this specific context of art, the fact that Guerilla Girls posed many strategically avoided since questions of female nudes in museums circa 1985.) The other professor who scaffolds herself with the declaration that she uses empirical approaches—assuming maybe she owns unquestionable and correctly interpreted data—in very unimaginative agreement concluded that the uncovering of the body, done so on behalf of the unnamed caricature of a subject who is remarkable only for the headscarf, was a means to cultivate hybridity. Yes, my dear reader, academics still read the cultures of the world in tealeaves now labeled statistics promptly cleaned up by the vacuum of Europe, who has no interest in this business of change. There were a mountain of other problems in this lecture but its recording has yet to surface online for me to get my culture vulture on… and then the CDU and Merkel announced that the burqa is the problem of now… some passive aggressive lashing out at immigrants, refugees and guest workers–or Germans falsely recognized as such… but only those who are women, and only among them only those who see the burqa as a necessary expression of their faith. Funny how feminism lends itself to attacking women in the name of all women, and freedom finds itself in the business of arguing against the freedom of others: Terminology turns tricks.

Merkel’s plea to make everyone ‘the same’ under German law by limiting the faith expressions of women who are Muslim buttresses itself with the truly Satanic idea of National law overriding religious freedom. Somehow the scarf is inappropriate and prevents her from communicating with the many Muslim women she encounters??? The pseudo-empirical data loosely quoted in the Guardian says that Merkel and the CDU are having trouble communicating with all of 100 women here in Germany and some visiting tourists but Merkel speaks from a position that sounds much greater than this on behalf of people who suddenly feel outnumbered… for no legitimate reason. Feelings were always post-fact. Post-fact is not a new position. We’ve known irrational fears… observed with blind eyes intentionally… identified against others for no other reason than feeling together in doing so… Numbers and feeling, belonging and the violence it inspires when believing that the Nation is a more natural force than god, a force over god. But here, this is a moot point because NATIONALISM IS THE RELIGION OF EUROPE. So let us reconsider the words here, the order, because first isn’t the veil an act of speech? Culturally Germans cannot be held accountable for non-verbal communication regardless how direct and obvious, nuance is always lost in the cascade of this culture’s verbal diarrhea where men don’t stop talking until they’ve made their point at least 4 times and by then the women and others have done the work already.

In digressing even further from my initial subject of writing—shrapnel—simultaneously absolving myself of any real exhaustive critique of European academic inquiry—more shrapnel—perhaps I would enjoy crashing my canoe into the melting glacier of an emotional Feminism… now re-membering of porn as a tool for domination: I might like to mediate on what it is exactly that German men do… or what they imagine themselves doing… via my extensive research on the question of German porn, specifically porn that identifies itself as German, not merely in language but actively in name. The most prevalent contemporary German branded porn produced right here in Berlin is probably German Goo Girls. I first noted the company for its frequent crossover into gay porn for some fairly regular and gratuitous Bromance. Porn is increasingly becoming a homosocial space in which men meet each other regarding what they wish to do to women. A woman becomes the means for us to rub our dicks together. But first the women: The company produces exactly its name… over and over and over again and again: The face of a woman glazed, like a donut. However, the girls featured in German Goo Girls videos are in fact often not German… but rather frequently Eastern European. These videos are durational performances of sometimes gangbangs, but mostly just circle jerks around the featured woman, who may or may not be German. Because these videos are long, and like German conversation very redundant, I skip around and forget to jerk off, the end is always the same a lot of German Goo applied to the face of a woman, who may or may not be German. So the national identity stamp of German on the company’s name and brand modifies the source of cum, not necessarily the liberated woman receiving it. There are variations to this end: sometimes the men jerk off (in obscenely close proximity) together into funnel that the woman holds in her mouth to catch every juicy drop, sometimes there is pee, sometimes a second cum hungry woman (though usually just one is the receptacle), sometimes the men gather around a bowl deposit their German seeds and then dump the bowl of unified semen over their shared erotic prop which is actually the face of a woman, though that face becomes cumpletely obscured by the collective ejaculate… A reader here should notice the veiled face of a Muslim now a liberty under National question might also bring to the surface other German liberties and their communicative premise: What can you say with a load of cum in your mouth? Does that cum speak for you? Matter as words? Is the woman unveiled so that German men might only better imagine the way their cum droppings smother the contours of her face?

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The identity stamp “German” on this varietal of porn… far from niche… in fact rapidly becoming normal… is available to anyone willing to click 18+ and therefore in our post-national encountering of each other online bored horny borg boys grow up thinking Germans are sick motherfuckers. Before, not long ago at all, porn used to be somebody’s dad’s stash in a garage or basement… My porn studies began with my father’s huge porn collection. Huge. While most dads maybe had Playboy or Hustler, my dad was in the swing scene… with a stack of swinger magazines that feature very little pornographic imagery compared to the volumes text in personal advertisements. My 8 year old brain couldn’t really comprehend which ads my father might have responded to… which he fixated on… cause there would be SM or bisexual/cuckhold ads alongside the simple standard of wifeswapping. The exposure of youth to porn is no longer via somebody’s pervy dad and the limitations of his storage. Where there was once a human connection to who owns the porn, who’s erotic that content satisfies, instead porn online is a now explicitly solitary in acquisition and experience and I believe few persons are willing to tread into the conversations that matter regarding this rapid change in how we teach sex to children so passively. The production of self-conscious or affirmative porn just doesn’t make a dent in the arsenal loaded by our silence. Porn in amateur POV contexts becomes more and more a study in identity erotics: Gay American men who fetishize sexual contact with heterosexual service men will often feature Confederate flags or Wanted Dead or Alive OSAMA BIN LADEN posters in the background of negotiating the joys of sucking str8 cock while enjoying together white supremacy or unending war which makes our cocks both gay and str8 cum together… a random click on Xhamster will bring you to German sex tourism in Africa (Yes, there is no specific national modifier for the idea of Africa when Germans are on safari)… Greeks hidden-cam recording Thai prostitutes… Red Windows is a rather repellent tourist advertising apparatus for Amsterdam where they offer to pay for the prostitutes of visiting tourists in exchange for recording the encounter… they offer to do the haggling… find the specific type of fetish object for this vacation. They often smoke weed in addition to shopping for girls (again not specifically Dutch women of course, just simply a realm of exchange made available by the Dutch). The Dutch host of these videos (which are remarkably void of actual pornographic imagery but rather saturated with the process of acquiring a girl for money here in Amsterdam, where the weed is great, so cum!) is so uncharming, though to his credit he is somehow aware of his soullessness… selling women admittedly instead of some Western brand of freedom, at least we see the monetary exchange within these ad hoc terms of employment.

Legislating equality never works. One might think Christians would first argue against porn, instead of a scarf that expresses modesty? I use porn here as a means to observe the private-public realm of German culture. In a country that insists religious expressions of faith must remain exclusively in the private—with the exception of pseudo-Christian expressions of course—we must try to enter the private life and imaginary of strangers. Porntubes show us the number of views and likes… the comments of viewers… I might be bullshit bold enough to declare this approach empirical. Porn has always been a mechanism of support and redistribution of identity. This is obvious because it will always be in name, or named otherwise. It is straight white male until it’s called gay… anal… interracial… Oma… Asian. That which is not designed for the straight white male gaze will be titled otherwise so as to not pollute the gaze or offend the sensitivities of this, the most delicate identity among us. The production of individually tailored erotic renders Nationality an important erotic background for the “everyday man” which is now a vast difference from Radley Metzger’s assertion that the ultimate erotic film might only take place on the stage of international affluence… that his erotic journeys best avoided the details of how characters made their money while fucking. Erotic for 1970s Metzger depended on a suspension of the economic, for which all viewers might easily fantasize along with a character living in blind affluence (think here maybe Sex & the City versus Jeanne Dielman, where women talk about being successful though the work featured is only the working toward sex that maybe becomes true love with money… while Akerman’s subject works endlessly, saying almost nothing, particularly void of any fixation on love). Now, however there is a psychic slippage of the self on screen, whereas before one watched to see an imaginary ideal played out, here we have wankers hoping to see themselves… see themselves doing… what? Scarcity, the feeling of it, has folks scrambling to be on screen… culturally documented… or immortalized… but for whom?

Thus, the lives of Goo Girls reveal that Germans prefer the veil applied by men at the willful submission of girls who in doing so demonstrate for many contemporary thinkers ‘empowerment’ regardless what happens in the minds and beds of the wankers watching blow after blow of loads and more loads of cum, regardless how sexual liberation might be played otherwise by a woman who doesn’t follow the exact same script every fucking time just like the woman before her. While a woman of Muslim faith willfully covers herself in a public sphere to perhaps rightfully protect herself from the erotic “cultural” German Goo fantasies of men wondering the streets alongside her. I turn yet again to ask: What of PUSSY RIOT or my much more beloved Guerrilla Girls both set precedent for obscuring the face within contemporary Feminist discourse? Will their obscured faces be outlawed as well? Like Putin, Merkel? Brutally jailed for political expressions in a Church? Or criminalized and controlled for faith expressions in a culture where diversity is merely a self-congratulatory punch line branding a public superior while they wank away in private to this elitist erotic swathed in a scenery of National identity and its masturbatory inheritance as producers of truth… freedom and the constantly renegotiable terms with which one might be granted a life out from underneath bombs.

Here, I am wildly grabbing hold of a single signifier labeled “German” reading it as a universal reflection of all Germans while dipping my toe into the pool of problematic mismatching it with other misogynies. Many people, when I speak of work or healthcare, critique over and over, saying that I speak only from an American perspective. I am not egoistic enough to believe that I will ever write in the universal, nor will I ever live long enough in Germany to satisfy the cultural mandates of integration… I wouldn’t even say it’s on my bucket list… because being German or integrating will always be judged subjectively with rotating variables, approved or denied at random by one who believes himself an authority to do so. I think I am often writing about Germany, I just think many aren’t good at recognizing themselves within a not so nuanced negative. I came here to observe the post-national project, which I firmly believe needs religious expression, for its power to unite over and within national borders simultaneously. Those whose single expression and experience of faith is mulled wine and an advent wreath will never understand an identity that feels itself a soul oozing itself outside the national, and even outside the body… perhaps also across many borders and yet all the while never feeling outside oneself or belonging or purpose because that’s the beauty of god who is to be found everywhere, in anyone, at any moment. God takes away the burden of perfection… for those in the cult of intellectualism (a godless people really) the idea or feeling of perfection is actually a plastic bag in which ideas are smothered… kept from getting wet… or recognized for their disposable components. The fledgling failure of belonging in times of terror is the belief that at any single individual might somehow come and erase the entirety all of us at once which is an impossible human feat. National identity is the McDonalds of identity politics because regardless your feeling of belonging, or the legitimacy of your passport… the presence of a Bulgarian grandmother or having been born in America while your parents worked as diplomats will present itself as a stage on which some real national usurps your legitimacy within whatever truly pathetic conversational strategy to argue dimensions of natural or culturally produced supremacy… We learn languages while not paying for schoolWe have gay marriage we are not a homophobic country… We tell the truth regardless how it makes you feelWe are not passive aggressive, like AmericansWe don’t see race… there is only the human race…

Identity politics are a passive aggressive invocation, always. I am talking to you until suddenly I am defining myself against you, you and everything you are reduced to by the violent, perhaps characteristically European, assumption that my perspective of your culture is                    the  end of our conversation. Your individual doesn’t withstand my enjoyment of generalization… the way that all others become one thing… while I am the one who is not. You are welcome here, on my terms, which reserve their right to change at any moment. Whimsy. Terms change just like that. This Nation calls itself Christian when answering the question of Islam… considers itself free to pander porn which has been banned in several countries, porn in which a woman’s face is obscured… by semen… a veil of semen administered by men… to be worn in a public-private… trafficked to the hyper-solitary sexual lives of those around the world suffering from high speed internet. National orientation is the first question of any encounter within this post-national trough of slop for pigs… Nationalism the only testament here, where it replaces god… determines as if scientifically belonging. While often merely a series of bold albeit cliche cultural assumptions directed to someone like me, the habit formed in reconstructing the interpersonal gravity between nationals is only the habit of refusing to encounter in favor of maintaining a quite dull self, one who is only a National… every bit of which is explained by this extremely unnatural–very violent–apparatus. The Nation is legalized violence… a series of terms reinterpreting it otherwise.

a little trifle who argues big

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I haven’t been leaving the house. I rarely find it pleasurable. Even speech becomes a bit of an effort… so when I decided after the Racial Politics in Porn panel at the Berlin Porn Film Fest that my question was worth asking, it came like a wave of violence sloshing from my mouth: “Do you think maybe the compulsion to always claim empowerment in queer feminist porn makes an erasure of the traumatic that brings us here?” When asked to articulate further, I stuttered attempting to affirm: “I’m not tasking each of you individually with the production of images of trauma for me to jerkoff to…” Yes, after hearing 5 black queer feminist porn workers speak I was the white guy questioning the invocation of the word empowerment… Feel free to walk out now in protest if you must. I wasn’t questioning them as individuals but rather the queer feminist collective body to which the panel was formed in response to… which on many occasions, I’ve heard reclaim porn as a means to empowerment. I believe it’s important to consider the implied progress of yet simultaneously concealed dimensions of this progress in the very lofty promise empowerment, especially when we consider gay Pride… activists organizing around the desire to experience an emotion, the emotion of pride over shame.

The panel left me with two conclusions: One, I will never ask a Q & A question again, and two, I truly don’t care about porn, especially the queer feminist variation renaming porn empowerment. The project of sharing feeling is quicksand under the architectural plans of “safe” space. I know porn isn’t my problem (to teach, mold or argue against). It’s not that I require anything of the queer porn moment… I just don’t think queer porn will ever happen to/for me, because I am an open source wanker. While I’m in favor of all workers actively seeking to better terms of employment, I hold the same candle in the wind for someone hoping to make it in porn as I would for someone who wants to open a used CD shop… It seems simply, outdated media for money making now that the whole world of porn is free, no?

What is a politics of achieving an affect? Be it security, safe space, pride or empowerment? When groups of persons seek to share in the same affect it does little but set the stage for mobbing, coercion, extortion of resources or labor for personal gain… offering your personal access to empowerment as proof, reward and payout to those who experience a less explicit sense of the feeling, or goddess forbid any tangible share in that success. Regardless how questionable and subjective your own testament of feeling good, the politics of affect acquisition require total faith in the proclamations of its participants and shapers. We all mean well, even me (believe it or not) but this is an immature politics. In what ways is queer a community rooted in affect? The intoxicating pleasure of being wrong, to misplace desire and feel free of becoming empowered… realizing there’s very little one can ask of anyone let alone a group social… so the external variables that compose the individual’s sense of empowerment will change and become a myriad of other things, just as a normative middle class will chase happiness their entire lives.

Organizing around an affect is not any different than a group of boys who take GHB together. Some people make it to the other side of that experience. Others do not. Fine for drug cultures; however, the political body, that purporting to be community in the name of uplift, doesn’t get to so carelessly discard those who fail in its experiment. Politics is a conversation long after we’re gone. Those speaking against, vacating in the middle—their absence brings undeniable form to the political project. The lack… that which is not in the picture haunts the body politic, animates much more over time when the opposing view becomes common knowledge—right? Everyone loves narrating the complexity of the insider’s struggle. Look to a not so distant heroine who recently converted to an instrument of evil saying: The Boys Are With Bernie… Uttered in such arrogance and determination, here Gloria Steinem casts a shadow over her entire legacy… all that power she usurped from being lucky enough to get recognized as a foundational feminist… exerts itself against the political opinions of women, young and old, who simply disagree. Power erodes: that is its only promise. Feminism isn’t the means to argue becoming upper middle class! It’s not the tool of choice when wishing to ascend from having enough already to simply having more. Free market capitalism works for women now too—watch the L Word: LA Lesbians rather uncritically spending money everywhere playing commitment and career games.

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NYC Lesbians competitively play a trivia night in Green Point about the L Word… they even form study groups leading up to the event. Living the L Word, studying it… this is tricky… how is extreme wealth feminist? The strong hold of identity in reality TV… seeing “yourself” playing a role, played for you. Imagine that within a mere moment of meeting someone heterosexual, I ask why they don’t watch some stupid Big Brother bug-eating survivalist shit… not only would a straight person’s entire being drown in the audacity of my assumption that their identity play stems from watching truly bad TV… I would be dismissed immediately for believing that they too need a reality play of themselves in order to better exist. For me, the gaze of wonder that accompanies the question: “How can you not watch Drag Race?” is a disappearing act… I disappear because I cannot exceed or out perform their expectations without first dulling my mind with the learning of that drag language. For me, a lot of the drag I see—rife with its verbal black-facing—is done mostly because they imagine themselves one day there… reading that live script while rat racing to represent product lines and the suddenly cement-limited dimensions of ‘fierceness.’

There is no political high road: “When emptying a cesspool one cannot expect to come away clean” says Gary Indiana. We are a mess… and we in this room don’t have the faintest idea of the worst of it. Feeling good together communities versus feeling ‘okay’ apart, which is a much larger portion of our ability to be living alongside one another. Feeling bad is never a public gesture. Feeling bad is always supposed to be a private, isolated expression, but it’s not, because feeling bad is, I believe, quite normal—we could be together in that. Maybe church is a feeling-good community, in which you’re also allowed to feel bad some of the time. Faith falters, and even while in the progress of nothing, faith still does it’s job. (I do see faith communities as the only way to convincingly honestly and affectively enact a post-national project.) Invoking politics to achieve an outstanding, correct self… perhaps maybe as a fame-worthy being… this is the imaginary of finally feeling good, alone. But we know this is not the case. Fame eats the conscious. Recognition halts progress, experimentation and revision. Politics and her questions are not a moment to be seen being correct, nor should the discovery of all our wrong come as a comforting realization.

I am glad to be in a community that doesn’t heavily medicate, where medicated people don’t have guns… drunken driving doesn’t happen here like it used to in my hometown… in my family. These are affects… very valuable ones… but they are also larger than feeling when shared as social contracts. I cannot prescribe these elements of feeling from these experiences to masses of others from elsewhere, because how could I know? We, collectively, share little in the details of circumstance, experience of precarity and affect, or love and safety. Groups cannot cultivate emotions. We will never be equal in that sense. This is the lonely burden of the individual. Groups confuse this process of social contract development by regulating and controlling individuals with affect expectations, and so when lesser desirable affects are observed they are merely prescribed other redirecting affects of sacrifice, heroism, buck-up and wait your turn. Tough love thrown over the stick in the mud, the bad one who’s holding us back from feeling good actualizing our future… Political play from the radical side can mirror almost identically the gestures of the now revolutionized right where the concept of knowing plays almost exclusively second to the act of feeling.

Porn as prescription to empowerment isn’t naïve, it’s recruitment. Is there safe space within such a volatile network of desire? Is there a porn pension program or are those bodies supposed to recognize empowerment as saving for themselves? This regimented sharing of affect is cult behavior. No individual survives a cult because they are always defined by it thereafter… empowerment sounds neurotic instead of honest. Claiming an affect in lieu of sharing specific experience avoids the political project of deconstructing the self within it. You lose so much of yourself in politics of identity because it’s a losing battle. You think you’re going to fight on behalf of your own vindication, but then you’re asked to check your weapons at the door… suddenly for many, individualism becomes the only way thereafter.

Affect communities, like drug-takers, are not inherently radical… I am not certain that drug taking is conscionable—troublesome for most at the pharmacopornographic trough. Preciado’s Testo-Junkie fails entirely to consider how deadly drug addiction is to poor people without continents to hop… without the glamour of drug treatment that is like a spa for your soul… gender swapping in lower classes is not a recreational activity, let alone for those stopped and frisked. Persons who fail to read in Preciado the wealth of his multi-lingual tongue might think that studying architecture at Princeton is normal. It is not. Princeton is not a casual purchase. Study of architecture to write queer theory reads to me: Money enough to do whatever the fuck I want, whenever the fuck I feel like it. We read his feelings in Testo Junkie… his power in T without consequence… alongside his power to grieve, breaking the theoretical arc with personal biography in a way that intellectuals approve and that feminists also embrace. He makes useful observations, but medicated urban living is only affordable sustainably to some, so here cost prohibits the group from feeling his freedom… of movement… of job integrity… while his synapses fire away both legally and illegally.

The Miracle of Community… Elisabeth I love your willingness to have me perform something under that title. What I love about it is the immediate kinship among those who have experienced a miracle—that kinship being that most people don’t believe us. What comes as a miracle to one, might just be a given to others. Miracles are precious because they operate best in the realm of disbelievers… miracles carry us, as in the individual—we a single body believing, witnessing—feeling the fantastic—they carry that lonely soul beyond its breaking point… past the shards of others who have yet to realize their brokenness… What is a life spent in recovery? Especially if recovery of “the what” is such a question… Are we recovering the self we imagined to build from youth…. the self that would have boycotted and bled to prevent the future that is ours now presently… this space in which we know not how to act? How do we identify need in others when here thereafter need renders itself, for us, a theoretical space?

Recoverists have us believing that we were once better? Recoverists are sifting sand, artifact-checking for a past that might still bring us somewhere, else. The past only resurrects hauntings that guide… distort and pervert our self-interested in/actions. Born this way, miraculously born with what we needed… so much so that we don’t recognize need biting us in the face… a need of a new way of being… which is why we drink and drug to feel our being differently. Survival may not be ours, but we are no sacrificial lambs… much worse than we imagine… still having everything, still thinking we suffer loss… hoping that we recognize need in feeling together. Intellectualism doesn’t save us from barbarism… the flat on your face folly of claiming only self-betterment… the claiming of knowing cultures… navigating the world like a game of chess… is for the ego… a portrait of an artist as wounded little self … an unbearable project of becoming a little trifle who argues big. We are not the important ones.

We should work to erase ourselves from history… because we don’t want to be remembered this way, in some hyper-record of social non-events. The wages of work were always death… so we raised the stakes… by working a lot on nothing in particular. Feelings and gravity are incongruent—empathy is a flawed charity at best… We share in very little because we share almost nothing… certainly not our stupidity, self-serving weaknesses, addiction to pain martyrdom and survivalist ideation… In what way does one manage their own incongruence, walk away from the group… be it the political collective… the housing collective… the family… the Church… and experience peace in a world of strangers closing in? Why does anyone take to the stage with a basket of her worst material?!? The stage is for triumph and there’s no triumph without rehearsal… is that what makes the stage a space for telling unbelievable lies? For feeling lies believable? The fracture of a star, a leader or a savior elevated to clear us while we love them for what they are not… adore them for suppression. Fear? Does fear really transfer, or does it get confused with rage? Public feelings are an externalization of the problems of an incoherent self. Help me feel together—inside?